wfto_label_dropshadow_small-188x300The Ambiente fair is the largest trade fair in Germany. In this year 2016, it will take place on the 12th-16th of February in Frankfurt am Main.

For the World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO) it is especially exciting this time. Why? Because WFTO will have its WFTO Product Label Global Launching at the Ambiente Trade Show!

From Frankfurt to the rest of the globe, WFTO and its members in more than 70 countries – WFTO-Europe comprising 15 of them – will present the Fair Trade Label for organisations to the public. This milestone in the Fair Trade movement will be communicated through the press, social media, websites, and other activities.

A credible Fair Trade label must have a good system backing the claim of the label

The WFTO has developed its own Guarantee System (GS), which was approved by WFTO members during the 2013 WFTO Annual General Meeting in Rio de Janeiro. It ensures that all WFTO members adhere to the organization’s Principles as expressed in the WFTO Standard.

The system is based on a three-level monitoring system, comprised of a Self-Assessment, Peer Visit and Monitoring Audit. Additionally, WFTO has developed the WFTO Fair Trade Accountability Watch, which is an online social accountability system that allows all members as well as concerned stakeholders or the public to raise alerts about a WFTO member’s compliance with the WFTO Standard.

The major aspects in the development of the GS were credibility, sustainability and robustness of the system.

The Guarantee System is not a product certification system, but an assurance mechanism that Fair Trade is implemented in the supply chain and practices of the organization as a whole.

Only those trading member Organizations who have successfully gone through this system, and therewith reached Guaranteed Fair Trade Organization member status, are entitled to use the WFTO Product Label.

 

The WFTO Product Label – a new Symbol of Fair Trade assurance!

The WFTO Product Label is an organizational label that guarantees the organization’s Fair Trade practices. It is licensed by WFTO to its members by signing a labelling contract.

It is a unique Fair Trade label that represents organisational best practices in applying the 10 Principles of Fair Trade, which are verified and regularly monitored through the WFTO Guarantee System.

The WFTO Product Label can be used by Guaranteed members on any type of product – including handicrafts, food and others – on wholesale and retail packaging and for promotional purposes.

Be sure not to miss this important moment in WFTO’s history and for the whole Fair Trade Movement, we would be happy if you come to celebrate it with us!

On Tuesday, 1st of December, Fashion Revolution and the Fair Trade Advocacy Office organised a debate in Brussels about fair fashion and textile supply chains.

Please find FTAO’s Press Release ‘Fair and transparent fashion and textile supply chains – it’s time for EU action!’ here.

wftday agentThe World Fair Trade Day, which is an initiative of WFTO, is an inclusive worldwide festival of events celebrating Fair Trade as a tangible contribution to the fight against poverty and exploitation, climate change and the economic crises that has the greatest impact on the world’s most vulnerable populations. In the following year 2016, the World Fair Trade Day will be on the 14th of May.

Our overall theme for this day is still ongoing until 2017: ‘Be an Agent for Change’!

Fair Trade is an agent for change. It is a tangible solution to poverty eradication, a good tool for sustainable development, and most of all Fair Trade promotes social justice.

The 2016 WFTDay will additionally focus on human chains, and human chains activities should be part of all WFTDay 2016 events. We will make a video of your human chains of Agents for Change. For reference, please read the WFTDay 2016 Internal Briefing for suggested events and activities!

Download theme rationale and ideas for WFTDay events and products.

Do you already have plans for WFTDay in May 2016? 

Our theme and celebration format are very much adaptable to your plans. Whatever theme you may have chosen and whatever activities you are planning, you can always try to integrate our theme and do at least two things during your celebration: (1) Gather your Agents for Change, and (2) Form human chains!

Be sure to start thinking about which activities linked to our general theme ‘Be an agent for change!’ you could do on that day!

Support Fair Trade. Join the celebration. Organise a Fair Trade event in your community.

Want to learn more about who and what is behind our clothes?

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Come to our event organised on the 14th of October 2015 in Brussels during the Belgian Fair Trade Week!

Students and all those interested in the topic will have the opportunity to discuss the main problems and solutions with actors involved in the fight for a fairer textile supply chain.

WFTO-Europe’s main partners for this project are:

  • Oxfam-Magasins du Monde – non-profit organization promoting Fair Trade;
  • Fashion Revolution – a global coalition of designers, academics, writers, business leaders and parliamentarians calling for systemic reform of the fashion supply chain;
  • Clean Clothes Campaign – dedicated to improving working conditions and supporting the empowerment of workers in the global garment and sportswear industries through lobbying and awareness-raising.

Together with the partners, a local authority (a representative of the City of Ghent), as well as Kong Athit, a representative of the Cambodian Trade Union and Roopa Metha, an artisan from Sasha, a WFTO member organisation, we are going to discuss the main problems existing in the textile supply chains and the actions which can be undertaken for a more sustainable situation.

The debate will be moderated by Peter Möhringer, Project Coordinator at the Fair Trade Advocacy Office.

The programme of the event:

  • 6.00-6.30pm:      Welcome and registration
  • 6.30-7.00pm:      Introductory session with the screening of the True Cost film trailer and discussions with Roopa Metha from Sasha and the Kong Athit, Cambodian Trade Union representative
  • 7.00-8.00pm:      Panel debate with the participation of representatives of the partner organizations as well as the representative of the City of Ghent to share the best practices on how local authorities can promote ethical products.
  • 8.00-8.30pm:      Q&A session and Wrap up session

The event will be in English and free of charge. Fair Trade juice will be provided.

If you want to take part in the event, please register here

Download the Wear_Your_Ideas_poster.

The event will be part of the Belgian Fair Trade Week, an initiative of the Belgian Development Agency. For more information  about other events organised during this week, please visit   www.semaineducommerceequitable.be

Logo_CTB_JPEGFari trade on board JPEG

 

Starting today, 25th of September 2015 the world leaders are meeting in New York, USA to adopt the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) during the UN Sustainable Development Summit 2015.

These 17 Sustainable Development Goals are the replacement for the Millennium Development Goals that were in place from 2000 until now. For the next 15 years, until 2030, the new SDGs are supposed to continue the developments of its predecessors and shape our world to the better.

The Fair Trade Advocacy Office elaborated a preliminary analysis on the new Sustainable Development Goals and Fair Trade, pointing out its importance for the successful implementation of these new and inevitable targets.

Please find the article here.

 

 

Beginning of next month, the Fair Trade Forum 2015 will take place in Uppsala, Sweden.

Read the following article from Bertil Högberg of The House of Fair Trade for detailed information about the event.

Fair Trade Forum in Sweden

2-3rd October is when we have the tenth Fair Trade Forum in Sweden. This time it takes place in the city of Uppsala. The Forum is an activity within the Swedish Fair Trade Network[1] in collaboration with a Fair Trade City. Uppsala, that became a Fair Trade City earlier this year, takes this opportunity to educate its citizens and its large student population about Fair Trade and at the same time welcoming consumers and people from the Fair Trade movement across the country.

The program involves 50 seminars, workshops and panel discussions and over 30 exhibitors and other activities. This year there will be a strong international presence. Two WFTO producer organizations from Latin America will participate: Antonia Rodrigues from ASARBOLSEM in Bolivia and Marcela Cofré and Oscar Muñoz from Calypso in Chile. The new WFTO member Les Jardins de Gaïa from France will present their work with Fair Trade and tea production. Sergi Corbalan from the FTAO in Brussels will also conduct seminars and participate in a discussion with members of the European parliament connected to the Vote4FairTrade Campaign. Representatives from Fairtrade Foundation and Fairtrade International will speak about gender issues in Fairtrade. The Swedish minister for consumer issues will be the key note speaker at the inauguration. Among the exhibitors are distributors of both WFTO and Fairtrade-labelled products as well as retailers, trade unions and other organisations involved in fair and ethical trade issues.

Website: www.fairtradeforum.se

FTFUppsala15

 

[1] A network of Fair Trade actors in Sweden including 6 members of WFTO-E: the Swedish Organization of Fair Trade Retailers, The House of Fair Trade, IM Fair Trade, La Maison Afrique , Sackeus and Fair Monkey.

 

 

 

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The Fair Trade Advocacy Office established a position paper in July titled “An innovative EU approach in support of Fair Trade practices in the new EU Trade & Investment Strategy”.

“The traditional tools of the EU trade agenda need to be complemented to make trade work for sustainable development. It is necessary to promote, in a bottom-up approach, Fair Trade best practices. On the framework of the upcoming EU Trade Strategy (expected for October 2015), the Fair Trade movement calls on the EC to use the new EU trade & investment strategy to unlock the power of producers/farmers, companies, local authorities and consumers by announcing coordinated initiatives to help them get engaged in Fair Trade. The European Commission, Member States, EU delegations and local authorities should be mobilised to promote Fair Trade best practices.”

Click here for the full document.

Last month, the 9th International Fair Trade Towns Conference took place in Bristol. Read about the contents and outcomes in the article

By Tadeusz Makulski, WFTO representative for Fair Trade Town Campaign and WFTO Europe Board member.

240 delegates from 20 countries across the world gathered in Bristol on the 4th and 5th of July for the 9th International Fair Trade Towns Conference.
Delegates from Europe, the Lebanon, Ghana, USA, Colombia and Japan had a chance to listen to the representatives of small producers as well as Fair Trade activists and campaigners.

FTT Bristol

Bristol Fair Trade Towns Conference

The first day opened with a session entitled “The Fair Trade for Sustainability Story”. Speeches were delivered by Fatima Ismael, environmental expert from Fairtrade certified Co-operative Soppexcca in Nicaragua who spoke on how climate change is reducing coffee yields and threatening the livelihoods of millions of farmers in developing countries, and Harriet Lamb, CEO at Fairtrade International, who explained how Fairtrade International is working with farmers to adapt and mitigate the effects of climate change. Participants also heard the stories of Greg Valerio, the Fairtrade certified jewellery pioneer who presented the gold certification scheme, Louise Nichols of Marks &Spencer and a speech from Linda McAvan, Member of European Parliament on Fair Trade and Sustainable Developement Goals.

The “Networking tables” held on the first day turned out to be an interesting idea – as the. The participants had an opportunity to share their experiences and views on several selected topics linked with sustainable development, Fair Trade and the Fair Trade Towns campaign.

Throughout the two days of the conference, participants could take part in thematic workshops on: advocacy for Fair Trade, Fair Trade public procurement, campaigning in the digital age, Fair Trade schools and emerging Fair Trade markets.

In addition to the workshops, the second day of the conference provided an opportunity to show the international context of the Fair Trade Towns campaign to the participants. International Fair Trade Town Steering Committee  members (Bruce Crowther, Adam Gardner, and Tadeusz Makulski) presented the Fair Trade Town campaign from the International perspective. At the time of the conference there were 1,703 towns in 26 countries with new initiatives developing in another 11 countries; Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan, India, Switzerland, Hungary, Slovenia, Lithuania, Cameroon, Ecuador and Peru. The Campaign was founded and continues to develop towards a Fair Trade Towns grassroots movement.

During a plenary session, WFTO President Rudi Dalvai gave a brief presentation on the organization. He underlined the fact that WFTO sees the Fair Trade Towns campaign as an important part of the promotional and advocacy strategy for Fair Trade.

Another announcement at the Conference came from CLAC, the Fair Trade Producer Network in the Caribbean and Latin America, who jointly with WFTO- Latin America are launching a Fair Trade Towns and Villages campaign in Producer countries across South America.Read WFTO article about this.

The Conference ended with the Mayor of Bristol, George Ferguson, and  the mayor of Menjez and Abra, two Fair Trade Towns in Lebanon, signing The Bristol Resolution. The resolution calls on local and regional authorities to to take concrete steps that will lead to the realization of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which is due to be released in September as a follow up to the Milleniun Development Goals.

The 3 mayors were followed enthusiastically by the conference participants who added their signatures to the resolution. The document was prepared by the Fair Trade Advocacy Office (FTAO) and the International Fair Trade Towns  Steering Committee members. Sergi Corbalan, FTAO executive director, invited participants to share the resolution with the mayors of other Fair Trade Towns and encouraged them to express their pledges for Fair Trade. Download the resolution and share this with your Local Authorities.

Click here to read more.